How Does a Grab n’ Go Breakfast Work?
Similar to popular fast food restaurant breakfasts, only healthier, Grab n’ Go breakfasts are packaged in paper bags, boxes or trays. Students pick up their breakfast from a central location in the school and eat it when and where they want, within school guidelines. Food service staff pack reimbursable breakfasts into individual paper bags, usually the day before, or purchase prepackaged reimbursable breakfast in boxes. These are then served with milk the next morning. Breakfasts are usually cold, but with a little bit of creativity and preparation in the morning, they can include hot items as well.
Grab n’ Go breakfasts can be served first thing in the morning, between classes, at a mid-morning break or delivered to individual classrooms. Students can pick up their Grab n’ Go breakfast from the cafeteria or from carts located in the hallway, school entrance, or other high traffic areas. Students can take the breakfast and, eat it in the cafeteria, outside, in the hall, or take it to their classroom to eat there, based on what the school decides is appropriate. There is a lot of flexibility with this method of serving breakfast, depending on the school’s needs. Students are responsible for following the school’s guidelines as to where and when they can eat and for throwing out their trash. Placing extra trash cans in high traffic areas and close to the areas where students tend to eat their food helps minimize littering and trash issues.
Why Serve a Grab n’ Go Breakfast?
Most importantly, when breakfast is served as Grab n’ Go, more students eat
breakfast. Grab n’ Go breakfasts bring breakfast to the students, making it easier for them to choose to eat breakfast. Many middle and high school students are not hungry first thing in the morning or they prefer to socialize with friends at that time. Grab n’ Go breakfasts allow students the flexibility and choice to eat breakfast where and when they want. Grab n’ Go breakfasts are convenient for food service staff and prepackaged breakfasts take less time to prepare than Traditional Breakfasts. Because it is so easy and efficient for students to grab a bag, this method also allows schools to serve breakfast more quickly and to a greater number of students in a short period of time.
When Does a Grab n’ Go Breakfast Work Best?
Grab n’ Go breakfasts work particularly well in middle and high schools because older students enjoy the flexibility and choice that Grab n’ Go provides. Grab n’ Go Breakfast would be a good delivery model to implement in schools where:
- The cafeteria or gym is crowded or not available for breakfast.
- A large number of students have to eat in a short amount of time.
- Busses arrive just before the start of classes, limiting students’ ability to eat breakfast before classes start.
- Teachers are supportive of breakfast and realize its importance to learning.
- Students rely on vending and convenience foods from outside the school for breakfast.
- The cafeteria is not located where students enter the building or tend to congregate.